Human-Computer Interaction 3e Dix, Finlay, Abowd, Beale

exercises  -  13. socio-organizational issues and stakeholder requirements

EXERCISE 13.1

A group of universities has decided to collaborate to produce an information system to help potential students find appropriate courses. The system will be distributed free to schools and careers offices on CD-ROM and will provide information about course contents and requirements, university and local facilities, fees and admissions procedures. Identify the main stakeholders for this system, categorize them and describe them and their activities, currently and with regard to the proposed system, using the CUSTOM framework.

answer

Example description for Careers Officer: (using CUSTOM, reduced form, p 461 of Human-Computer Interaction)

Current system

  1. Stakeholder has to provide information to potential students on available courses. Success is measured by student understanding and satisfaction and by the numbers of students matched to appropriate courses.
  2. Stakeholder is satisfied by finding a suitable course to meet a student's needs and finds it stressful when information is not available or accessible to meet this need.
  3. Stakeholder understands the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) system and knows how to find course details from manuals. Stakeholder has basic IT skills using a PC.
  4. Stakeholder enjoys work and feels valued by the organisation. Stakeholder is comfortable with technology.
  5. Stakeholder works alone. The only workgroups that are relevant are with class teachers who are consulted intermittently about individual students.
  6. Tasks include (1) interviewing students, (2) researching courses and opportunities, (3) writing summary information sheets, (4) liaising with universities and teachers. Some tasks (e.g. 2 & 3) are discretionary and can be done when the stakeholder has time. Others are fixed (1) or event driven (4). Some tasks may be fragmented by interruptions of enquirers 'dropping in'.
  7. Stakeholder is bound by confidentiality of individual student details and considers the responsibility of advising students on their futures a significant one.
  8. Stakeholder is working in a heated office environment in a school.

Proposed system

  1. As before. Stakeholder has to provide information to potential students on available courses Success is measured by student understanding and satisfaction and by the numbers of students matched to appropriate courses.
  2. Stakeholder is satisfied by finding a suitable course to meet a student's needs and multimedia system helps to facilitate this. Stakeholder must be assured that the information on the system is accurate and current.
  3. Stakeholder understands the UCAS system and knows how to find course details from manuals. Stakeholder has basic IT skills using a PC. Stakeholder must understand how to navigate the multimedia system.
  4. Stakeholder is comfortable with technology. However stakeholder may feel less valued as multimedia system allows students to access information directly.
  5. As before. Stakeholder works alone. The only workgroups that are relevant are with class teachers who are consulted intermittently about individual students.
  6. Tasks include (1) interviewing students, (2) researching courses and opportunities, (3) writing summary information sheets, (4) liaising with universities and teachers. Some tasks (e.g. 2 & 3) are discretionary and can be done when the stakeholder has time. Others are fixed (1) or event driven (4). Some tasks may be fragmented by interruptions of enquirers "dropping in". Task 2. is now facilitated by multimedia system.
  7. As before. Stakeholder is bound by confidentiality of individual student details and considers the responsibility of advising students on their futures a significant one.
  8. As before. Stakeholder is working in a heated office environment in a school.

 

EXERCISE 13.2

For the scenario proposed above:

answer

Rich picture:

Open ended - any notation/drawing is acceptable. It should include all of the actors identified in the answer to 13.1, and the relationships between them, as well as external and internal factors, motivations, and so on. For example, the university is interested in attracting students. It has a number of motivations and issues: raising funds, meeting need for learning provision, demand for resource provision. Students are interested in available locations, quality of learning provision, value for money, closeness to family, and so on. A rich picture can use any notation but should represent the entire system spatially.

Root definition/CATWOE:

A system owned by university management, to be operated by careers staff and students working in careers offices and schools within the context of UCAS regulations and competition from other universities, to sell courses to students, generate income for the university and meet a need for learning provision.

CStudent.
ACareers staff/student.
TStudent intention to go to university transformed into place offered and income for institution. Need for learning provision transformed into need met.
WIncreased student numbers will increase income and effectiveness.
OUniversity management.
EUCAS and university regulations; competitive environment from other institutions.

Transformations - examples:

 

EXERCISE 13.3

The example in Section 13.3.2 (soft systems methodology) provides a root definition for an airline booking system from the perspective of the airline owner. How would this change if it was presented from the perspective of the customer?

answer available for tutors only

 

EXERCISE 13.4

Find case studies of participatory design in action and use these to provide a critique of the approach. What are the benefits and weaknesses of participatory design and how might any weaknesses be addressed?

answer available for tutors only

 

EXERCISE 13.5

You are designing a new system to help people manage their "to do" lists. Use the contextual inquiry approach to interview a colleague to see how they make use of such lists. Make sure you interview them in context - in their study or workplace for example. Produce sequence, flow, artefact, cultural and physical models of the activity.

answer available for tutors only


Individual exercises

ex.13.1 (ans), ex.13.2 (ans), ex.13.3 (tut), ex.13.4 (tut), ex.13.5 (tut)

Worked exercises in book

  
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